Tom Brady may be without key target Rob Gronkowski for one game because of a low hit, so the New England Patriots quarterback thinks the league should look into the type of tackle that resembles a chop block.
According to Tom Curran of CSN New England, Brady pointed out the other positions that are protected and suggested those rules be extended to the pass-catchers.
“Everyone else has their legs protected in the NFL. Quarterbacks get their legs protected. Defensive linemen get their legs protected. Linebackers get their legs protected. I don’t see why a defenseless receiver shouldn’t get his legs protected either. Maybe that’s something they’ll look at in the offseason.”
Brady absolutely has a point. Some of the scariest injuries happen when a defensive back dives at the legs of a bigger opponent.
Granted, players like Gronk aren’t easily tackled with ideal form. The 6-foot-6, 265-pound tight end is simply a massive human being who 5-foot-11, 200-pound safeties can’t compete with physically.
It’s an extremely unfortunate situation for Gronkowski and similar-bodied players, because they’re more of an exception to the rule than the standard. Plus, the more we limit tackle areas, the closer we get to a mandated 24-inch striking zone in the midsection.
But that’s the optimal tackling area anyway, and again, Gronk isn’t an ordinary offensive weapon.
Most importantly, though, this is not—and I repeat, not—a case of “Brady needs to be a man and play football.”
Without a doubt, he’s only saying this because it happened to a teammate. That doesn’t make it right or wrong, that’s just the way it is. Football is a violent game, and low tackles seemingly pose a greater risk for potential injuries.
Perhaps the NFL will discuss a leg-protection rule for defenseless receivers, but a new guideline is far from a certainty.